23 Cannons: The 69th Annual Hunger Games.

24 tributes are reaped by the Capitol to enter the 69th Hunger Games, marking the end of the sixth decade of Games. And as they all prepare for the fight of their lives, none of them know the true extent of the twists that will face them in the arena. With rebels, liars, and killers thrown into a deadly arena governed by power-mad Gamemaker, who will live to hear every one of the twenty three cannons sound out?

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16. Evaluations

Osiris had woken early; the anticipation had made all sleep last night a near-impossible task. But really, it was to be expected, considering what today was. Finally, the private sessions were upon the tributes. And boy, was Osiris ready.

He currently was sat on the end of his bed, tying up the boots of his training outfit securely. He had deliberately made the morning routine drag on for as long as possible, since the sessions weren't due to begin until ten. Currently, it had just turned half nine: Osiris had been stalling everything since around six. But now, he supposed it would be ideal to leave his room, and go wait for the others in the dining room: the growl of his stomach also confirmed that this would be the best course of action to take.

Osiris climbed off of his bed, standing on the plush carpeted floor beneath him. A confident grin was plastered across his face: he knew it was stupidly dangerous to be cocky in this situation, but he was more than prepared for the private session. He had a plan, and had the skill to back it up. This was all going to go just perfectly.

He walked across his room, and to the door, which he pushed open. As soon as the door was open, the rich aroma of breakfast hit him all at once. It smelled delightful; perfect for today. He followed the scent down the hallway, and to the dining area, where Topaz, Cris, and Allure were sat. It was the same as every other day in the Capitol, but this time, there was a definite atmosphere of anticipation in the air.
"Morning, Osiris," Cris said with a cheerful smile. This wasn't unusual; Cris had been as happy as possible with the tributes. Perhaps it was to make up for the loss of his brother last year, or perhaps it was simply because he saw a lot of promise in this year's tributes. But it wasn't much of Osiris' concern: as supporting as Cris was, in reality, he was a pretty bad mentor. He sort of just fell behind-backwards into winning; his victory was entirely a fluke. Allure, however, was much better. Her victory had been much more entertaining: she didn't join the Careers, but instead joined a large band of outliers, nicknamed the Anti-Careers, and helped them take down the trained tributes, before murdering every last member of this alliance in their sleep. Allure was ruthless, intelligent, and a perfect mentor in every way. However, at the end of the day, Osiris was going to be the one winning, so being independent was the key to true victory here.
"Good morning," Osiris replied, sitting at the table. He grabbed a bowl filled with a various assortment of delicious food: he wasn't exactly sure what it was, but it gave him energy, and didn't seem to have any ill effects, so he was fine with it.
"Are you both ready for the training sessions today?" Allure inquired, idly playing with her auburn hair. She was eating an orange, and seeming to enjoy the flavour.
"I think so," Topaz said, giving a confident grin. "I've been preparing for as long as possible, and I'm confident that I'll breeze through it."
"That's good to know," Allure replied. "Just remember to leave room for error. It's all well and good having a well-rehearsed plan, but be prepared to improvise if need be."
"I'll keep that in mind," Topaz said, nodding.
"You should too, Osiris," Allure added, looking at Osiris. He nodded between mouthfuls. "Since I don't want either of you coming away with god awful scores." Osiris finished his breakfast, and looked at Allure.
"Yeah," he said. "That would be quite the awful outcome indeed."
"But really," Allure said. "It's up to you to come away with the best score possible, so do not screw up."
"Got it."

They all sat at the table, eating in silence for the next few minutes, until a clock chimed out. Osiris glanced over at the clock: it was about to turn ten.
"Oh," Topaz said, also looking at the clock. "I guess this means we should head down to training now."
"Yeah, you should do that," Allure said, nodding to herself as the two tributes stood up. "Good luck."
"Thanks," Osiris said.
"Thank you," Topaz also said.
"Oh yeah," Cris suddenly added, after being silent for all of breakfast. "Good luck guys. Knock it out of the park."
"Will do," Topaz replied, before walking down the hallway to the elevator. Osiris took one last glance at the mentors, and followed suit.

As he walked down the hallway, Osiris felt his anticipation rising. It was drawing closer and closer; very soon, the private sessions would begin, and the scores of all the tributes would be projected for the entire population to see. To put it in simple terms, it was the most exciting thing to happen so far in the Games. Osiris continued to walk, grinning to himself, until he reached the end of the hallway. Topaz pressed the button on the wall, and the elevator slid open. They stepped inside, and Osiris stood in the middle of the elevator, having become accustomed to being transported in this way. Topaz continued to work the elevator, and pretty soon they were zooming down to the lowest floor possible: the training floor.
"So," Osiris said to Topaz. "What're you going to do for the private session?"
"Sorry, Osiris," Topaz said with a wink. "Can't tell. A true victor knows that even her closest allies will eventually be enemies."
"Yeah," Osiris laughed. "Because I'm really going to hold your strategy against you, aren't I?" 
"Well, I don't know!" Topaz said. "But whatever. It's not as if this is really going to affect us in the Games much, is it? Simply being from District One is enough for the Capitol to want to back us up in any way possible."
"You're right," Osiris admitted. "Whilst the sessions are pretty fun, to us, the scores aren't really that important."
"Still," Topaz added. "That doesn't mean that we should just accept screwing up; we have an image to maintain. We have to get some of the highest possible scores if we want any chance of looking better than the common outliers."
"Yeah," Osiris said. Topaz went to reply, but she was cut off by the elevator door opening. The two tributes exchanged an excited grin, and then proceeded to step out.

Overnight, the training floor had completely transformed. All the stations had vanished from sight, and in their place was an abundance of tables and chairs. The other tributes that were arriving at the same time as the District 1 pair quickly sat at various tables, as far away from anyone else as possible. Osiris quickly spotted the other Careers sitting at a particularly large table in the middle of the room, and ran over to them, quickly followed by Topaz. Dylan noticed the pair, and grinned.
"Hey guys!"
"Hey, Dylan," Osiris replied, smiling. He quickly took a seat at the large white table. The chairs weren't as glamorous as those in the apartments; in fact, they reminded him of the desks and chairs from school, back when he used to attend before dropping out in favour of Career training. His seat meant that he was sitting directly across from Kylee, who seemed to be absorbed in surveying her nails. Dixie was sat next to Osiris, and was looking suspiciously at Kylee. But Osiris didn't pay too much attention. Kylee was probably confident in her abilities, and Dixie was probably lost in thought about what she was going to do. It was probably wrong of him to think this way, but Osiris assumed that Dixie needed to plan even now, considering she was an outlier with very little experience. Looking to the other side of the table, Osiris saw the young pair from 4. Ren was currently talking to Annabell, who was looking slightly anxious. It was likely due to them both being younger, and having less experience. But Osiris was still confident that they would both do well.

Osiris then turned his attention to Dylan, the leader of the Career pack this year. Osiris was fine with Dylan taking the lead, since being in control didn't really suit him: to be honest, Osiris preferred to go alone, but being in an alliance like this could only bring benefits.
"So," Dylan said to Osiris. "You ready for the session?"
"Yeah," Osiris said, nodding. "I'm prepared, and definitely ready."
"Me too," Topaz chimed in.
"That's great," Dylan said. "The other guys are also ready to go, and I'm fairly certain that the Career group this year will do brilliantly." Osiris smiled, and opened his mouth to reply, when suddenly, a voice sounded out in a thick Capitol accent.

"Osiris Garnet, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"Ha, guess it's already my turn to go," Osiris said, grinning. He leapt out from his seat, and waved at the other Careers as he rushed across the room.
"Good luck!" Dylan called after him, but Osiris didn't show any sign of responding. Instead, he approached a large set of double doors on the wall which would have been hidden by the camouflage station normally. A Capitol attendant was standing there in a white dress, with dark skin, and long, curled, even darker hair.
"Right this way, sir," she said curtly.
"Thank you," Osiris said as he walked past her, and through the double doors.

Through the double doors was an empty hallway. As Osiris walked down it, he heard his footsteps echoing around. It was strangely quiet, but he didn't care: all he was focusing on was the set of double doors at the other end. He strode towards them, and, confidently, he pushed them open, entering the private area.

The private area consisted of a raised platform on the far side of the room, which seated the Gamemakers. The head Gamemaker was sat in front of all the others, scrutinising Osiris with a single glance as he took in the room. To the left of the platform was a single door, which was where Osiris was due to go once his session was complete. there were several smaller scale versions of the stations scattered around: Osiris noticed camouflage, poisons, projectile weapons, melee weapons, and targets. There was also a station for traps and fire making, as well as an artificial tree in the corner for various purposes. Osiris' gaze drifted towards the projectile weapons: specifically, the throwing knives.
"Hello there," the voice of the head Gamemaker caught Osiris off guard. He looked up to the woman, and bowed. "I presume you are Osiris Garnet?"
"Yes, miss," Osiris replied with impeccable manners. A bemused smirk spread across the full red lips of the head Gamemaker.
"Well then, good luck."

And with that, Osiris rushed over to the throwing knives, and grabbed two handfuls of them, expertly placing them between his fingers. He then walked across the room, his shoes squeaking on the polished floor, and stood before a training dummy. The head Gamemaker did not take her eyes off of him. Osiris didn't look at her, though; he was too absorbed in getting this perfect. He only had one shot at this, and he wasn't going to miss.

Taking a deep breath, Osiris assumed a familiar stance, and with lightning fast speed, all the throwing knives left his hands. They struck into the dummy in several fatal areas, causing fake blood to drip onto the floor. Osiris then looked up at the head Gamemaker, who seemed satisfied.
"Thank you, Mr Garnet," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Osiris did as instructed, and walked through the door, leaving the training room just as a group of avoxes set to cleaning up the room, preparing it for the next tribute.

--

"Topaz Doublet, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Topaz stood up from her seat, and walked across the room in a similar fashion to Osiris. Only she didn't hesitate in passing the attendant, as she was only focused on giving a flawless performance in her private session. She had to do just as well, if not better than Ebony did last year. There was simply no alternative: she could not fail him.

She had been so absorbed in this thought that she wasn't even aware that she had entered the private room. But Topaz was quick to snap out of this trance, and took in the room as the head Gamemaker addressed her.
"Hello there. I presume you are Topaz Doublet?"
"Yes," Topaz replied, glancing to her right, towards the melee weapons, every few seconds.
"Well then, Ms Doublet," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck to you."
"Thank you," Topaz said.

She then proceeded to head over to the melee weapons. Topaz stopped in front of the shelf housing swords and spears. She took one of each, and looked at the Gamemakers, ensuring that she still had their attention. Only the head Gamemaker was really watching, but that was all that mattered.

Topaz walked across the room, spear in one hand, sword in the other, and approached the dummies. She then paused for a moment, letting suspense build, before rushing at one with the spear. She thrust it into the stomach of one dummy, successfully impaling it. False blood gushed from the wound, and whilst the head Gamemaker was looking at that, Topaz rushed over to the adjacent dummy, and swung her sword. She managed to slice the dummy's waistline, and cut it in half. The severed torso collapsed to the ground in a gushing puddle of fake blood. Topaz dropped her sword in the red puddle, and looked at the head Gamemaker. Her face didn't betray anything.
"Thank you, Ms Doublet," she merely said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Topaz walked through the door, and once again the room was prepared for the next tribute to enter.

--

"Dylan Spelunk, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"Well, seems like I'm due to go now," Dylan said to the other Careers. Kylee offered a sly grin, and without warning, kissed him on the cheek.
"For luck," she said coyly. Dylan, blushing, then left the table, and walked quickly through to the private room. But he needed to take a moment to forget about Kylee's sudden advance: he couldn't be distracted by girls here of all places.

"Hello there. Dylan Spelunk, I presume?" the head Gamemaker said, snapping Dylan out of it.
"Uh, yeah," he said, taking in the room. Luckily, they seemed to have all he needed to impress the Gamemakers.
"Well then, Mr Spelunk. Good luck."

Dylan nodded, and jogged over to the melee weapons station. He grabbed a large dagger, and then, clutching it in his hands, rushed over to one of the training dummies. He leaped at it, and tackled it to the ground. And, whilst they were falling, he brought the dagger up to the dummy, and sliced open its throat. Fake blood spurted out onto Dylan's face, and his training uniform. Leaving the knife in the dummy, he stood to his feet, and wiped his face, grinning at the head Gamemaker.
"Thank you, Mr Spelunk," she said, showing zero emotion, or reaction. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform."
"Okay then," Dylan said with a grin, and jogged out of the room. The avoxes returned, and made quick work clearing up the mess made.

--

"Kylee Harker, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Kylee grinned to herself. Oh yes, it was her time now to show the Gamemakers what she was made of. This was going to be brilliant. She looked across the table to Dixie, who was smugly staring at her. But before Kylee could go, she had to continue the mind game she was playing with Dixie.
"Well, I guess it's my turn to go now!" she said in a sickly sweet voice.
"Yeah, seems it is," Dixie said, before grinning slyly. "Good luck. I would hate for anything to go wrong."
"Yeah, me too," Kylee said. "Good luck to you as well in your session when the time comes!"

With that, Kylee left the table, and sauntered across the room. Dixie was smarter than she assumed, and it was becoming clear that if Kylee wasn't careful, Dixie could completely destroy the web of lies and deception that Kylee had been carefully spinning over the past few days. And that simply couldn't happen. But first, appearances had to be maintained.

Kylee entered the private room, and before she even glanced up at the Gamemakers, she took in the menagerie of stations.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said, forcing Kylee's attention. "Kylee Harker, I presume?"
"Why yes, you presumed correctly." Kylee said coyly, smirking at the head Gamemaker. No reaction, oddly enough.
"Well then, Ms Harker, good luck." That was all the head Gamemaker said, and Kylee stood in disbelief for a moment, before moving towards the melee weapons station. So manipulating the Gamemakers wasn't going to work if they were all as stoic as the bitchy head Gamemaker appeared to be. So Kylee had to resort to plan B: impress them with her physical skills.

Kylee selected a scythe from the pile of weapons, and, after twirling it in her hands for a few moments, stealthily slipped across the room, to one of the training dummies. The head Gamemaker did not take her eyes off of the tribute, and Kylee was acutely aware of this. But she didn't let it put her off, and she jumped up, and swung the scythe. The dummy's head came rolling off onto the floor below, followed by a copious amount of fake blood. Satisfied, Kylee turned to face the head Gamemaker, and found that she still hadn't elicited a response. But she knew exactly what to do: to truly succeed, she had to utilise every trick in the book.

With this in mind, Kylee unzipped her training outfit, and stood out of it, remaining in only her underwear. The air conditioning now seemed bitingly cold, but that paled in comparison to the head Gamemaker. The woman's normally dark features had gone bright red, and her eyes had widened. Perfect. This was going great. Kylee smirked to herself. Now just to once again show off her fighting prowess.

With surprising agility, Kylee leaped over to another dummy, and, not even facing it, she swung the scythe. Another clean decapitation. She then stopped, and looked up at the blushing Gamemaker.
"W-Well then, Ms Harker. Thank you," the woman stammered. Kylee smiled darkly. She had this woman wrapped around her finger. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform."
"Thank you," Kylee said, winking, before dropping her scythe, and skipping out of the room, leaving her suit in the middle of the room. The avoxes that cleaned up were silently perplexed by the appearance of the training uniform. But they still cleaned, and in no time at all, the room was ready for the next tribute.

--

"Xander Bradley, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Xander walked across the room, leaving Alexis and Rose. As much as he didn't want to go through with this private session, he had no choice in the matter. Not that it was really important: the escape plan was still very much viable, and as long as he had basic survival skills, he wouldn't need all this evaluation to keep living. But, he supposed he still had to entertain them. So he entered the private room silently, looking across the room, then at the Gamemakers.
"Hello there. Xander Bradley, I presume?" the head Gamemaker said just as Xander looked up at her.
"Yes," he replied, adjusting his glasses.
"Well then, Mr Bradley. Good luck."

Xander then walked over to the knives, and grabbed one. The handle felt cold to the touch. He glanced up at the head Gamemaker, who was eyeing him critically. He looked away from her, rolling his eyes. She was simply waiting for him to impress her. But he wasn't going to be one to comply. However, neither was he going to disappoint.

Suddenly, Xander ran across the room, towards the dummies. Once he was close enough, he lifted his knife, and brought it down to the chest of the dummy. Right around where the heart would be. Fake blood erupted from the wound, and Xander backed away to avoid getting coated by the crimson spray. He then looked up at the head Gamemaker, who betrayed no response. But it was to be expected; it would make the reveal of his score this evening all the more satisfying.
"Thank you, Mr Bradley," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Xander nodded, and walked out of the room, confident that he had done enough to convincingly make it look as if he cared about the Games.

--

"Rosaline Weathers, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"Oh goodness, already?!" Rose exclaimed, her eyes widening. A sense of dread filled her. The private sessions meant that she was one step closer to entering the Games, and even though she had Alexis' plan, and Elektra's advice, she still couldn't help but worry.
"Hey," Alexis said, giving a reassuring smile. "You'll be fine. Just make it seem as if you really want to do well, and they'll lap it up. Trust me."
"Okay then," Rose said, and left the table, heading towards the private session.

As she walked through the hallway, Rose's mind was racing. What if something went wrong? What if she got too low a score, and the Gamemakers deemed her useless, killing her off in the bloodbath for the hell of it? What if she scored too high, and was made a target for the Careers? No. She was just being paranoid now. Rose set these ridiculous thoughts aside as she pushed open the doors, radiating a false confidence.

"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Rosaline Weathers, I presume?"
"Yes, miss," Rose said. She felt unnerved just being in this woman's presence; the same woman that had judged Elektra three years back. But she wasn't going to let it show.
"Well then, Ms Weathers. Good luck." Rose nodded, and walked towards one of the stations, beginning her private session.

The first thing that Rose did was quickly set up a snare trap. She then grabbed a dummy, and placed it in the trap. However, despite all her preparation, the trap didn't go off, and the dummy sort of just stood there, almost mocking her. A chill went through Rose. This was bad. She needed to do something. Fast.

Thinking on her feet, Rose rushed over to the throwing knives, and grabbed one, before rushing back to the dummy. As she ran, she launched the knife, and to her surprise and relief, it struck the throat of the dummy. Blood gushed from it, and the force of the knife knocked it to the ground. Rose stopped running, and looked up at the head Gamemaker.
"Thank you, Ms Weathers," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Rose nodded, and left as quickly as possible, just relieved for it to be over with.

--

"Ren Zanda, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Ren breathed out a sigh of relief. The suspense building up to his private session was starting to get to him. But now, his time had finally come. He looked over at Annabell, who was also looking at him.
"Well, I guess it's time for you to go," she said, smiling softly. "Good luck."
"Yeah, same to you," Ren said. "I'm sure you'll do great as well."
"Really?" Annabell asked. Ren nodded, and offered a supportive grin.
"Yeah, really."

Ren then left the table, and walked through to the private room, focusing on nailing what he had been practising. He was fairly confident, but that didn't mean anything. Life was too unpredictable to be entirely sure about anything. He walked into the room, and quickly took in the stations, before looking up at the head Gamemaker.
"Hello there. Ren Zanda, I presume?"
"Yes," he said. It was formal, but not in a way that made it seem as if Ren entirely respected her. Sure, he had trained for this, but not for the reasons of most Careers; he had simply done it to make sure that some poor, innocent soul didn't get sucked in before their time. How ironic it was that he had ended up being reaped fairly after all, though.
"Well, Mr Zanda. Good luck to you."

Ren nodded, and approached the throwing knives. He grabbed two, one in each hand, and turned around, still remaining at the station. he looked across the room at the dummies, and took a deep breath. This had to go perfectly if he wanted any chance of getting a high score.

With a flick of the wrist, both knives flew from Ren's hands, and soared across the room. Both of them stabbed a different dummy, but both stabbed right in the heart. The dummies fell to the floor, and Ren looked up at the head Gamemaker
"Thank you, Mr Zanda," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Ren nodded, and quickly left the room, feeling confident in his abilities. Now all that remained was how well Annabell would fare.

--

"Annabell Reeves, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Annabell tensed up at the sound of her name being called, but took a deep breath. She could do this. It would be fine. She would be fine.
"Hey, kid," Dixie said, offering a half-smirk to Annabell. "Good luck in there."
"Yeah," Annabell said quietly, nodding. "Same to you." She then left the table, and, just like every Career before her, walked through into the private room. She tried to exclusively focus on doing well, and soon that thought dominated her mind. She would be fine. It would be fine.

Taking a deep breath, Annabell entered the private room, and swiftly surveyed the area. She then looked up at the head Gamemaker, and offered a shy, polite smile.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. Annabell was about to reply when the Gamemaker continued. "Annabell Reeves, I presume?"
"Yes, ma'am." Annabell stated.
"Well then, Ms Reeves," the Gamemaker continued. "Good luck to you."

Annabell looked around once more, getting her bearings of the room. She then headed over to the knives, and picked up a particularly large one. The blade looked sharp to the touch. Just what she was looking for. Annabell then walked across the room, and approached a training dummy. She lifted her knife, and slashed the dummy. It cut into the dummy, but no fake blood came out, and the dummy didn't fall. So much for a one-shot.

Annabell continued to hack away at the dummy with the knife, until finally, she was rewarded with a gush of fake blood, and the dummy toppling to the floor with the knife embedded in its thigh. Annabell looked up at the head Gamemaker with wide eyes.
"Thank you, Ms Reeves," was all the Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Annabell did as instructed, and quickly vacated the area. Only when she was in the elevator, moving up to her apartment did she breathe a sigh of relief.

--

"Markus Lucian, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Markus, who had been motionlessly leaning against the wall at the back of the training gym, suddenly began to quickly walk across the room towards the double doors. Not because he was worried about getting there late. No, he was hurrying because he quite simply couldn't wait to show off to the Gamemakers. Oh, it was going to be brilliant.

Markus burst through the doors, and stormed down the hallway, chuckling to himself. He knew that what he was about to was going to definitely outshine anything the previous tributes had done. In fact, he was confident that he may end up getting the highest score out of all the tributes. Perhaps he would even get the coveted score of 12; the impossible score that no tribute had ever attained before. But before all that, he had a show to put on.

The Gamemakers all watched as Markus burst into the private room, laughing to himself. However, Markus soon quietened down, and surveyed the room. Brilliant.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. Markus rolled his eyes; this whole introduction thing was entirely pointless in his opinion. "Markus Lucian, I presume?"
"Who else?" he jeered.
"Well then, Mr Lucian," the head Gamemaker continued, as per usual for her. "Good luck."

Before she had even finished addressing Markus, the District 5 tribute was off. He grabbed a large sword from the pile, and rushed at the dummies. In record time, he then proceeded to slice every last one up into tiny little pieces. By the end of it all, there were dummy chunks and fake blood everywhere. And Markus hadn't even broken a sweat.
"Thank you, Mr Lucian," the head Gamemaker said stoically. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." And Markus rushed out of the room, leaving a complete disaster zone in his wake. Just how he envisioned the Games to be.

--

"Alexis Rays, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Alexis sighed. Of all the things she could be doing right now, entertaining the public by allowing the Gamemakers to grade her was the most awful thing she could be doing. She'd be playing right into the Capitol's hands, and this number would follow her for the rest of her life. But, she decided, it was worth going through some humiliation in order to get back at them all in the most unexpected way.

She walked through into the private room, and swiftly looked around the area, immediately deciding on her plan of action. A simple enough strategy, really.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Alexis Rays, I presume?" The District 5 tribute didn't even bother to dignify her with words. Instead, she just nodded her head. "Well then, Ms Rays, good luck to you."

Alexis immediately made a bee-line for the traps station, and began to swiftly work on something just out of site of the Gamemakers: she wasn't going to let them see anything she was preparing. Only the finished result. After completing this, she grabbed some poisonous berries from the next station over, and returned to where she was working. She then placed the berries down, and the make-shift launcher threw the berries directly into the face of a dummy. The false veins changed colour, and it fell to the floor. Alexis then stood out of the way of the launcher, letting the Gamemakers see it clearly. Whilst the head Gamemaker looked it over, Alexis adjusted the simple string around her neck that her token was attached to. The token itself was hidden inside her outfit, so that nobody would see it.
"Thank you, Ms Rays," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Alexis nodded slowly, and walked through the door, the only time she would ever directly obey the Capitol.

--

"Mason Irizarri, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Mason took a deep breath, before leaving his allies, and heading through to the private room. He had been hyping himself up for this for a while now, and he felt slightly more prepared than before. Upon entering the room, he quickly surveyed his surroundings. They had what he needed.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said, startling Mason. "Mason Irizarri, I presume?"
"Yes," he said, itching with anticipation.
"Well then, Mr Irizarri. Good luck."

Mason immediately set off to the cooking station, and took a slice of meat from the freezer. He placed it on the ground, and grabbed some wood, and proceeded to try and make a fire. It took several attempts, but eventually a small flame appeared. It gradually grew in size, and Mason placed the meat over the fire. However, it instead fell into the flames, and as Mason watched in horror, it burned to a charred crisp. No. This couldn't do. If this was all they remembered him for, he would get an awful score. He had to do something else.

Looking around frantically, Mason spotted the knife station. He grabbed a knife, and rushed over to a dummy. He then began to slice at it with the knife, doing very little, until one lucky slice cut where a major artery would be. Fake blood poured out, and the dummy fell to the floor. Mason looked up at the head Gamemaker, certain he had finished here.
"Thank you Mr Irizarri," the head Gamemaker said to him. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Mason nodded, and quickly left the room, trying to ignore the dread that he had screwed up too badly.

--

"Salvera Combe, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Salvera heard the new voice, and for a moment, almost thought it was the familiar one that had been plaguing her for who knows how long. But the message sunk in pretty quickly, and she realised that now was the time for her private session.

Why bother? You'll only fail, Sally.

Salvera willed herself to ignore Velcro's mocking taunts, but they pounded around in her head, not going away. She took a deep breath, and walked across the room, and to the doors.

Trying to ignore me? Let's see how long that lasts.

She wasn't going to dignify the voice with a response this time: there were far more important things at hand than her sanity. More taunts assaulted Salvera's mind as she walked down the hallway, but as soon as she entered the private room, her head went silent. She quickly surveyed the area, but didn't take much in.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Salvera Combe, I presume?" Salvera stood there for a moment, her mind having hit a blank.

Come on, you idiot! Answer the god damn question!

"Yes..." she said, trailing off like always.
"Well then, Ms Combe," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck to you." Salvera nodded, and began to walk towards the projectile weapons, when she froze again. The tension of this situation had gotten to her, and she had frozen. She willed herself to move, but it wasn't working. The anxiety had gripped her harshly.

Oh my god, Sally. Can't you even do something as simple as pick up a weapon? God, I'm ashamed to be associated with you. It's embarrassing.

"Shut up..." Salvera said in a quiet voice, but the irritation was clearly detectable.

Oh, what was that? You'll have to speak up, Sally. My hearing isn't what it used to be, since you know, I've been dying of old age waiting for you to do something!

"I said..." Salvera began, before suddenly, a wave of fury took over her. "SHUT UP!!!!!!!" She stormed across to the weapons, and, with a surprised Gamemaker watching her, she grabbed a blowgun, and filled it with darts. And then, without taking another step, she turned around, and was presented with Velcro's smug face amongst the dummies. Just staring there, mocking her.

Without even blinking, Salvera launched the highly toxic darts at the dummy she believed to be Velcro (in actuality, it was a hallucination, but she had no way of telling). It turned a horrific shade of purple, and fell to the ground. And like that, Salvera's stone cold fury dissipated. She looked at the head Gamemaker, who was equally bewildered as the schizophrenic girl.
"Uh, thank you, Ms Combe," the Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." And Salvera did just that. No sign of that outburst was visible on the girl at all. And at that point, head Gamemaker Dew realised that this girl could be the most unpredictable wildcard she had ever put into the arena.

--

"Brinn Redwood, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Brinn's anxiety level increased upon hearing those words. The Gamemakers would judge him in a matter of minutes. Just like how all his dead co-workers judged him all day, every day. It would lie dormant during the day, but at night, they would just torment him. Reminding him how he survived and they didn't. Threatening to place him in an endless forest in the arena. It just wouldn't stop.

But for now, he had to at least try and focus on the private sessions. There was nothing else he could do but that. So he shakily walked through the hallway, and into the private room. He looked around, and saw the weapons, before looking up at the Gamemakers.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Brinn Redwood, I presume."
"Y-Yes," he stammered.
"Well then, Mr Redwood," she said dryly. "Good luck." Brinn nodded, and walked over to the knives, following the plan in his mind: show off by cutting up a dummy. It was simple enough, and he knew that even he wouldn't be able to mess up on that.

However, as he picked up a knife, and turned around, he froze solid. His body turned to ice, and a whimper erupted from his body. Standing there, in the corner of the room, was a large tree. Several spindly branches were coming off of it, making it look as if it was about to walk towards Brinn, and claim his life, like how it had claimed all those others a few years ago in District 7. He had to stop it before it moved. He just had to!

Possessed by fear, Brinn rushed towards the tree, screaming, and planted the knife right in the trunk of the tree. He let out another shriek, before running towards the door next to the Gamemakers' platform, vanishing through it.

Dew just looked at the door, beginning to wonder just how many oddballs had been reaped this time around.

--

"Rosa Milne, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"Oh gosh... I'm up," Rosa said, looking at her allies.
"Well, good luck to ya," Erika said, offering a warm smile. "Knock 'em dead."
"Okay then," Rosa said quietly, smiling. She then began to walk towards the doors, and towards the private room; all the while, she was mentally running through the plan in her head. She was sure she would be able to impress the Gamemakers. She was just sure of it.

Upon entering the room, Rosa surveyed everything. Luckily, they had precisely what she needed. She looked up at the head Gamemaker, who was harshly staring at her, but instantly her expression turned stoic.
"Hello there," she said. "Rosa Milne, I presume?"
"Yes," Rosa replied, nodding.
"Well then, Ms Milne. Good luck to you." Rosa gave a shy smile, and quickly began to put her training plan into motion. She grabbed an axe from the pile of weapons, and then made her way over to the traps and camouflage stations, grabbing a sheet of tarp, a rope, and some wood. She fashionably cut out a pole of wood from a log, and draped the tarp over it. She then cut up the rope, and used it to tie down the tarp, effectively creating a make-shift tent.

Rosa stood up, proud of her work. She knew it wasn't the typical combat training, but she hoped it was impressive.
"Thank you, Ms Milne," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Rosa gave a short bow, and walked out of the room, happy with herself. It wasn't the most formidable display, but it was certainly showing off skill.

--

"Kaye Nylon, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Kaye chuckled to himself as he heard his name called out. Finally, the time had come for him to show off to the Gamemakers. And he was going to make sure that he was going to be someone to remember. He bounded across the hall, and through the doors and hallway, to the private room.

Without missing a beat, Kaye took in the room; every last detail was immediately etched into his memory. He then looked up at the head Gamemaker, who was eyeing him curiously.
"Hello there," she said, reverting back to an expressionless stance. "Kaye Nylon, I presume?"
"Oh," Kaye said, winking. "You know it."
"Well then, Mr Nylon," she said. "Good luck." Kaye flashed a smirk at the head Gamemaker, and began to walk towards the first station. He was going to wow this stony woman if it was the last thing he did.

The first station Kaye went to was the weapons. He grabbed a large dagger and placed it in his pocket. He almost instinctively knew that the knife he had chosen was going to be perfect for his show. He glanced up at the head Gamemaker as he moved over to the next station: poisons. He grabbed a jar of poison, and placed it in his other pocket. He giggled to himself, knowing how confused the Gamemakers must be. They had no idea what he was planning; he was deliberately obscuring his true motives behind his flamboyant display. And it was working.

Kaye then skipped over to the camouflage station, and grabbed a tube of paint: lime green, he noted. With all the necessary equipment, he moved on to the main part of his show: the dummies. With the head Gamemaker watching his every movement, Kaye knew that it was all going to be amazing. Another smirk crossed his face as he approached the first dummy. And, with all eyes on him, Kaye lifted the tube of paint. And then proceeded to squirt it all into the eyes of the dummy.

Whilst the lime green dripped down the dummy's face, Kaye pulled out his dagger, and the poison. He threw the lid off the poison, and poured it all over the blade, before letting the jar fall to the floor. The glass shattered, shards mixing in with the puddle of poison. But the head Gamemaker was too focused on Kaye to notice that. With this in mind, Kaye then rushed up to the dummy, and sliced both wrists with the toxic knife. The 'veins' of the dummy changed colour, and copious amounts of fake blood flowed from the wound. And finally, the dummy fell in a heap of blood, poison, glass, and paints. Truly ingenius.

Kaye looked up at the head Gamemaker, and winked coyly at her. She didn't seem to be affected, though. Whatever: there was no way she was going to forget this display.
"Thank you, Mr Nylon," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform."
"If you insist," Kaye said slyly. The head Gamemaker didn't react. "Whatever," he muttered under his breath, and left the colourful display as he exited.

--

"Emily Horwitz, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Emily sharply breathed in as the message sounded out. She looked across the table to Liam, who was giving an encouraging smile.
"Good luck, Em," he said warmly. Emily returned the smile.
"Don't worry about me," she said with a wink. "You know I'll be fine. I always am." She then left the table, and walked across to the doors, passing the attendant without batting an eyelid. Right now she couldn't afford to be distracted by anything: if she wanted to stand a chance of surviving, she needed to really impress the Gamemakers. And going after all the Careers, and several weak-looking outliers, and then Kaye Nylon, Emily was almost certain that they would hardly pay attention to her. So she would have to work twice as hard to impress.

To Emily's surprise, the head Gamemaker was still entirely alert when she entered, which was completely surprising, considering how her mentor had told her that the Gamemakers usually lost interest after District 5.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said whilst Emily also took in the room, happy to find that it had exactly the same equipment as what was available during the past two training days. "Emily Horwitz, I presume?"
"Yes," Emily said without missing a beat. She had to come across as confident, and willing to kill. And whilst she was a good actress, was she capable of pulling the wool over the ever-watching eyes of the head Gamemaker? She hoped so.
"Well then, Ms Horwitz. Good luck to you." Emily nodded, and looked away from the head Gamemaker, moving towards the first station.

Emily quickly reached the knives, and took two, one in each hand, getting used to the feel. Once she was comfortable, she walked across to the dummies on the other side of the room. She stared at one in particular, and took a deep breath, closing her eyes.
"You can do this, Em..." she said under her breath. She could do this. All she had to do was show off to the Gamemakers, then she would leave. Simple as that.

She opened her eyes, and lifted the knives up, before bringing them down on the poor unsuspecting dummy. Fake blood poured out, but Emily didn't stop. She kept hacking and hacking and hacking until nothing was left but a pile of fake blood and whatever the dummy was made of. Breathing heavily, Emily dropped her knives, and looked up at the head Gamemaker.
"Thank you, Ms Horwitz," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Emily obeyed, and walked through the doors. The head Gamemaker hadn't shown any emotion, but she could only hope that she had impressed.

--

"Griffin Fairbain, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Griffin jumped when he heard his name, full of nervous energy. He had convinced himself that this score determined everything. If he got too low... then he'd be deadin the bloodbath. It couldn't happen. But he sourly doubted his ability to do well. He was small, and weak. How was he going to impress the Gamemakers?

Still, he forced himself from his seat, and without even saying a word to his allies, he walked away from the table, and across the room to the doors. He walked through them, and down the hallway; with every step, he felt the panic rising. But he had to stay strong. He couldn't just let himself, and his allies down by being a wimp. It simply wasn't something he was going to let happen.

Griffin entered the private room, and looked around, aware that so many tributes had gone before him, and had probably impressed the Gamemakers in ways he would never be able to. Still, he had to give it a shot.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Griffin Fairbain, I presume?"
"Y-Y-Yes," Griffin whimpered.
"Well then, Mr Fairbain," she stated. "Good luck." Griffin nodded at her, and then slowly walked across the room to the projectile weapons. He pulled out a blowgun, and expertly loaded it to the brim with darts. This was going better than planned: in training, he hadn't been able to do this in one go. He was going to get a good score, he just knew it.

Holding the weapon, Griffin sauntered across to the dummies, and steadied himself with the weapon. Now all he had to do was hit them with the blowgun, and he'd be done. Griffin took a deep breath, and launched the darts. All of them exited one after another with startling speed, but when Griffin came up for air with an empty blowgun, he noticed one thing right away. None of the darts had even come close to hitting anything.
"No..." he said in disbelief as a crushing feeling welled up in his stomach. It couldn't be. But it was. Griffin had failed spectacularly.
"Thank you, Mr Fairbain," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." And Griffin did just that, but as he pushed through the doors, the sound of his sobs could still be heard for a few minutes after he left, but he had gone before the next tribute came in.

--

"Dixie Semming, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"About damn time," Dixie said to herself as she stood up from her seat. Finally, the time had come for her private session. Being an outlier Career meant that she had to wait forever for her session. But now the time had come. And despite how late on she had come in, Dixie was going to ensure that she would leave an impression.

As she bounded through the hallway before the private room, Dixie's thoughts oddly drifted to Griffin, her district partner. She wondered how the kid did, even though he would likely die at the hands of one of her allies tomorrow. Dixie soon shoved the thought aside, and stormed into the private room, exerting a very specific type of confidence only ever seen in a true Career.

Dixie surveyed the room, and smiled at how perfectly everything was set up. She was going to breeze through this private session.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Dixie Semming, I presume?"
"The one and only," Dixie said brashly.
"Well then, Ms Semming, good luck to you," the head Gamemaker replied, before Dixie rushed off to the weapons.

The first thing Dixie grabbed was the spear. With the weapon in hand, she rushed at the dummies, and thrust it towards one. She did so with enough force that it impaled the dummy, but kept going, skewering a dummy situated behind it. Fake blood rushed out, and Dixie left the weapon in them, before running back to the weapons. She then grabbed a whip, and returned to the impaled dummies with the new weapons. And with almost lightning-fast movements, Dixie cracked the whip down on the two dummies, slicing them up into chunks. And by the end of it, it was clear that if these dummies were humans, they would have been dead long ago.
"Thank you, Ms Semming," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform."
"Sure thing," Dixie said, dropping the whip, and swaggering out, entirely confident in her abilities.

--

"Tavish Longhorn, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you."

Tavish instantly understood, and stood up, looking at Derek, his only remaining ally.
"Well, good luck bro," Derek said, smirking.
"Same to you," Tavish replied, and walked away from Derek, heading towards the doors. He passed the friendly looking Capitol attendant, and walked down the hallway, feeling oddly calm. He was certain that he would do fine, and that what he planned to show the Gamemakers would come as a surprise.

Entering the room, Tavish immediately located his weapon of choice, and sighed in relief. All was going well. He then looked up at the head Gamemaker, who was giving him a curious stare, not unlike one a cat gives a mouse before toying with and eating it. It unsettled Tavish slightly, to say the least.
"Hello there," she said. "Tavish Longhorn, I presume?"
"Yes," Tavish replied.
"Well then, Mr Longhorn," she said, and Tavish realised that she had probably said the same thing to every tribute so far. "Good luck."

Tavish then walked across to the weapons, and dug around in the pile, eventually pulling out a spiked mace. He looked across to the head Gamemaker: her eyebrows were raised ever so slightly. She was curious as to what a twelve year old outlier would be doing with a large, powerful weapon such as this. Well, Tavish wasn't going to be one to disappoint.

Holding the mace, Tavish walked across to the dummies. He drew closer, and then, he raised his mace. It was heavier than the ones in training, but he still managed. He then swung down, connecting with the shoulder. The arm came clean off. And a few seconds later, the blood dripped down the body. Tavish did the same with the other arm, and the dummy fell to the floor in a pool of fake blood. He looked over at the head Gamemaker, pleased with himself.
"Thank you, Mr Longhorn," she said, clearly not going to give him a response. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Tavish nodded, dropped the mace, and left, hoping that he had come as enough of a surprise to earn a high score.

--

"Erika Jersey, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

"Huh, looks like I'm up," Erika said to Gwen and Lucy. "I guess I'll see ya on the other side."
"Yeah," Lucy said. "Good luck, by the way."
"Thanks," Erika said. "Good luck to you guys, too." Gwen also offered a smile, and Erika left her allies at the table, and headed across to the doors. She wasn't worried about the scores for the most part, considering that so long as she had her allies to work with, she would be fine. But still, if she wanted sponsors, she would need to impress.

Erika opened the doors to the private room, and stepped in. She did a quick look around of the room, finding all she needed, before looking to the head Gamemakers.
"Hello there," she said.
"Hi!" Erika replied cheerfully.
"Yes," the head Gamemaker said. "You are Erika Jersey, I presume?"
"Yup! That's me all right!" Erika said, beaming. "And I'm ready to impress!"
"Very well then, Ms Jersey," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck to you."
"Thanks!" Erika said, smiling, before beginning the private session.

The first thing Erika did was grab a crossbow from the weapons, and loaded it up. She then walked over to the dummies, and whilst keeping a healthy distance, fired an arrow at one. It hit right in the heart. She fired another arrow, which hit the next dummy in the head. Two more arrows were fired, striking two more dummies in fatal positions. It came easy to Erika, and she was certain she'd secured a good score. She looked up at the head Gamemaker, and smiled once more.
"Thank you, Ms Jersey. Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." the head Gamemaker said.
"Sure thing!" Erika chirped back, smiling widely. She then proceeded to walk out of the door, still smiling to herself, hoping that what she had done was enough.

--

"Liam Aldair, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Liam nodded to himself. Finally, the time had come for his private session; it had felt as if he had been waiting forever. The wait also seemed to drag on even longer once he didn't have Emily to keep him company. But all that waiting was done with now, and all that remained was impressing the Gamemakers. Hopefully, he would be able to do that, and gain a few sponsors to help both himself and Emily out.

He walked across the room, and through the doors. As he walked through the hallway, he allowed his thoughts to roam for just a moment. They soon drifted to Emily. How had she done? Would she get a good score? What if something had gone wrong? It could have easily happened.

Liam shook his head; he could worry about Emily later. But just for this moment, he had to entirely think about himself; if Emily failed, then it was up to him to garner favour with the Capitol. And he wasn't going to let Emily down.

He walked into the private room, and surveyed the stations, confirming that he was able to go through with his plan. He then looked up to the head Gamemaker, perched on the platform.
"Hello there," she said. "Liam Aldair, I presume?"
"Yeah," Liam said, feeling uncomfortable as she glared coldly at him.
"Well then, Mr Aldair," she said. "Good luck." Liam nodded in response, and wasted no time in beginning.

Liam first made his way over to the weapons, and grabbed a bow. He wasted no time in grabbing several arrows. He strung up the bow, and walked across the room until he was around fifty feet from the dummies. Taking aim at one, Liam steadied his posture, and fired. The arrow struck right through the shin of the dummy, which would incapacitate it, but not much else. He strung up another arrow, and aimed at the same dummy. This one struck directly in the throat. Fake blood foamed out, and the dummy collapsed to the floor. Liam continued to do this for the next five dummies, until he ran out of arrows: he never missed a shot. Finished, he looked up to the head Gamemaker.
"Thank you, Mr Aldair," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Liam nodded again, dropped his bow, and walked through the door. Hopefully, his score would be enough to help both Emily and himself out in the Games.

--

"Lucy Caspian, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Lucy let out a sigh. She wasn't sure why she sighed, but it calmed her down, easing the tension she felt.
"Good luck, Lucy," Gwen said, offering a supportive smile.
"Hopefully, I'll be fine," Lucy said. "And good luck to you, too." Gwen nodded, and watched as Lucy left the table, and walked through the doors, leaving only two tributes left in the training gym.

Lucy walked down the hallway, controlling her breathing. It would be fine; even if her score was less than perfect, together, the alliance would cover for any mistakes. Still, she had no idea how the others had done, so she was still going to put in her all.

She entered the private room, and was immediately relieved to find it still had everything that the gym had offered previously. This was all going to go fine.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said, slightly startling Lucy; she hadn't been aware of the woman's presence. "Lucy Caspian, I presume?"
"Yes," Lucy said.
"Well then, Ms Caspian," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck to you." Lucy bowed slightly in gratitude, and then walked off to the first station.

Lucy walked up to the weapons, and after a few moments of rummaging around, she pulled out a large hunting dagger. Clutching it firmly, Lucy stalked across the room to the dummies. She then raised her dagger, and stabbed a dummy in several places, causing fake blood to drip out, and onto the blade and floor. She pulled out the dagger, and watched as the dummy sank to the ground, before moving on to another dummy, where she repeated the same actions again, albeit with more accuracy this time. The second dummy fell to the floor, taking Lucy's weapon with it.
"Thank you, Ms Caspian," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Lucy obeyed, and walked through the door, only hoping that together, the alliance would have a decent enough score to do well in the Games.

--

"Derek Lemoine, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

Derek stretched in his seat, before standing up. Being from District 12 was all well and good until the whole waiting until last thing happened. But now, at last, Derek's turn was up, and he was going to show the Gamemakers everything he had.
"Hey," a voice called out. Derek glanced around the room to see Gwen, his district partner sitting on the other side of the room. "Good luck in there."
"Same to you," he replied. "Don't screw up too badly." Gwen chuckled at Derek's sense of humour, and grinning to himself, Derek walked through the doors, getting closer to the private session.

He wasn't worried, though: even if he was just a fourteen year old Seam kid, Derek was confident that he had put in enough training to get a decent score. He was sure of it. And, going by the past few years, it seemed that District 12 was gradually getting on average higher scores. It would all go very well, hopefully.

Derek entered the private room, and before anything else, he located the necessary stations for his session. And to his relief, they had everything. Then again, why would they make the tributes show off with something that they hadn't trained in? It wouldn't make sense.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker suddenly said, causing Derek to turn his head up to her. "Derek Lemoine, I presume?"
"Yes," he said.
"Well then, Mr Lemoine," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck."

Being penultimate in the private sessions, Derek felt as if he had to do something that would really impress. Luckily he was from a district with low expectations, so hopefully it wouldn't take too much to do. But he still had a plan to follow, so that was the most important thing to do. He walked over to the throwing knives, and picked up a couple, before walking over the the dummies.

However, as Derek did so, he tripped, and began to fall forwards, causing him to lose his grip on the knives. One of them clattered to the ground in front of him, but the other one soared through the air, and implanted itself in the jugular of a dummy, causing fake blood to dribble down, before the dummy collapsed.
"Thank you, Mr Lemoine," the head Gamemaker said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform." Derek nodded, and walked out. It could have gone better, but, hey, perhaps that lucky shot counted for something? Only time would tell.

--

"Gwen Levine, please make your way through to the private area. The Gamemakers are ready to see you now."

This was it. The final private session. The last time a weapon would be held by a tribute before the Games. Gwen felt a sense of panic. She still didn't have a definite plan, and her session was about to begin. She nervously glanced around the empty room, and reminded herself that if twenty three other tributes could do it, she could.

She walked through to the hallway, and tried to ignore her worries, but they weren't going to go so easily. What if all her allies had messed up, and they were relying on her to gain sponsors? Perhaps the fate of all of her allies rested solely on her score. The pressure to do something good suddenly began to build up. But she had to at least try, and hopefully do whatever it was well enough to impress the Gamemakers.

Gwen entered the private room, and looked around at the stations. She picked out every weapon, every dummy, and every activity. However, as she stared at a particularly large dummy, it hit her.
"Hello there," the head Gamemaker said. "Gwen Levine, I presume?"
"Yes," Gwen said, with a new-found determination. She had figured out what she was going to do, and boy, was she going to do it well. The final private session of the 69th Games was not going to be a failure by any means.
"Well then, Ms Levine," the head Gamemaker said. "Good luck to you."

Gwen nodded, and walked across to the weapons, looking for what she needed. A quick look-around quickly located a nice looking group of throwing knives. She grabbed them all, and placed them in her hands expertly. She then walked across to the centre of the room, and looked right at the large dummy. And then, all at once, the knives in her left hand flew out, striking the dummy. They all slammed into the pressure points of the dummy, causing it to fall to the floor, but no blood came out just yet. Gwen readied her right hand, and launched the knives from her right hand. They all slammed into the main arteries, and the dummy imitated a spasm before a large amount of blood pooled out from what now resembled a crimson pin cushion. Gwen looked up at the head Gamemaker, happy with her accomplishment.
"Thank you, Ms Levine," she said. "Please leave through the door to the side of this platform."

Gwen complied, and walked through the doors, and through a smaller hallway to a single elevator, thus bringing the training of the 69th annual Hunger Games to a close. Whilst she entered, and pressed the button for the top floor, she joined the other tributes in the waiting game as all of them waited with baited breath for their training scores to be revealed later on in the evening; the reveal of the scores could potentially be game-changing, and everyone hoped it would tip the odds in their favour.

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